Poodle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 218 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,593 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I think just about everyone on PF loves puppies - we love to share the excitement of the search for the perfect puppy, the wait for it to be old enough to come home, photos of babies with their Mum and in their new place, tales of ups and downs, puppy love and puppy naughtiness. But I wonder - especially in the light of recent posts by new owners finding the experience rather overwhelming - if we sometimes help to reinforce the myth of the Perfect Puppy: the one who sleeps happily in a crate all night from the start, is housetrained in a week of easy lessons, never chews anything except puppy toys, loves everyone, plays nicely with the cat and the children, trots beside you on a lead after just a couple of lessons...

I suspect most of us tend to forget just how much work raising a puppy can be (I know there are a number of members who have not forgotten, and only adopt adult dogs as a result!). Sleepless nights, piles of washing, children sobbing over nipped fingers or chewed up cherished toys, precious rugs soaked in urine, favourite plants dug up and scattered... and the unremitting demands of in and out for housetraining in all weathers, walking the tightrope of lots of finding lots of good socialising experiences while avoiding the risks of disease and other dangers, no social life worth talking about, and not even going to the loo alone. There are massive compensations, of course - happiness is a warm puppy, and a happy pup is a joy forever - but sometimes those compensations can seem a long time coming.

Were there times you thought "OMG, what have I done?!" And what helped you make it through?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,806 Posts
fjm you posted what's been on my mind. After my first tpoo puppy Baby I never wanted another puppy ever again she was so difficult to train, she shrieked in the crate, she ate and chewed everything, she even gave herself food poisoning once, she was a hard puppy so much so that my next three poodles were all adults. But the flip side with adult dogs,all mine were adopted middle age 6 ,7 and 8, is sadly they didn't live nearly as long as I wanted them to ( do still have my Flower adopted at 6).

I had forgotten some of this when I got Beatrice, I was devastated over the sudden freak loss of 8 year old Baby, but by this time I knew the crate had to be my friend. Trying to get the silly pup to understand what I wanted, I was frustrated with leash walking and her yapping a lot.

What got me through was the thought of the dog she could be and break down my training to address what was most important lessons, safety was first.

Remaining calm

Being able to crate or gate off Bea in a safe place while I took beaks away from her.

Realizing that sometimes she would have no idea what I wanted from her, and that it all would take time.

And you would think I would be seasoned after two puppies, nope third puppy Pia had a whole other set of issues that had to be dealt with.

Nope Puppies are hard to raise
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
Were there times you thought "OMG, what have I done?!" And what helped you make it through?
When Maisy started doing zoomies around the living room for the first time! I grew up with a small poodle, so the sight of a big one zooming around my newly-renovated house got me pretty wide-eyed and nervous :afraid: What got me through was remembering all of the amazing moments I had with my heart dog, Missie, and knowing those same moments were just around the corner for me and my new dog, Maisy :love2:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
885 Posts
Lexi wasn't a hard puppy, or a puppy that pitched a fit in her crate, but she was a puppy. :) A very busy puppy, so while we had no "on my goodness moment's" she kept us on our toes! Ate her crate pad twice, would carry her leash in her mouth on walks, which I thought was so adorable until I realized that she had chewed it up in the process. Mouthed anything and everything, rubber mulch was like puppy bubble gum, chewed a hole the size of a half dollar in my antique couch when she figured out how to get down the stairs herself(before that, it was "oh how cute!!!! She has figured out stairs!")and dh and ds didn't catch her first. Used to jump on all the cushions for said antique furniture, both chairs as well and push them off and then hop all over them. Used to hide under and in stuff while she was little and we searched high and low, calling her name as she stayed put. She loved her crate and we would cover the three sides to help her sleep. Realized that didn't work when she pulled the sheet in her crate and crewed holes in it. Left the window open in the bedroom for a nice cool breeze. That worked until she got tall enough to pull the tip of the curtain in her crate an chew on it. Ds, who was almost 18 when we brought Lexi home, laughed on day and said "How does it feel to be 48 with a toddler in the house!" Which described it to a tee! Oh, and puppy obedience class? The most exhausting hour of my week!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,441 Posts
Puppies can be crazy! I have a friend that has a baby less than 1 that is a handful and is actively searching for a German Shepard puppy. I've been trying to talk her out of it. Puppies are hard work, even the calmer puppies. They are cute, but behind the cuteness is a whole lot of sweat!

Especially if you're like me and it's just you and you alone. No one else to depend on to share the load. I don't recommend it unless you're seriously committed. And for those that have done 2 puppies at once...God bless you!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
27 Posts
As a mom to a 10.5 week old spoo, I ask myself what did I sign myself up for every day. While Addie is adorable, and loves to cuddle on the couch, she can be an absolute terror. And I don't actually regret adopting her, boy is she more work that I thought and we are only 10 days in. While she can be sweet and mild during her off hours, when she turns on, there is no stopping her. Zoomies in the house, land shark to the extreme, inside or outside, jumping, chewing, puppy exuberance to the max. Her short attention span, in addition to her curiosity and energy make a wonderful puppy into a monster at times. On top of the energy, both my husband and I have a ton of the anxiety over trying to socialize, train, and protect her.

If I was raising her myself, I'm not sure I could do it. I am saved by a husband who is committed to not only helping pick up poo and feed her, but who can actually keep up with her energy. The amount of puppy energy that we expend every morning and night during our puppy romps takes both of us. I also thank all the advice I have found here, online and in books to help keep active and engaged.

But most importantly, I make an effort to remind myself during the cute puppies moments how much I do actually love the little ball of fur. When she is asleep on her bed, on top of her favorite toy of the hour, passed out, I actively note the good moment, rewarding myself silently (shhhhh don't wake the puppy) how much I anticipated getting a dog for the last 7 years. Both puppy and humans need positive reinforcement when it comes to surviving puppyhood ;-)
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
10,387 Posts
I don't know what it is. For the first 3 or 4 months with Timi I muttered "never again, this is my last puppy" over and over every day. But by the time she was a year old I started thinking maybe just one more time.
I guess that my efforts and misery were amply rewarded?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
240 Posts
Mira is my first dog, I also haven't had a "baby" animal since I was a child. Mira came out to be a typically easy puppy, but even easy puppies have their difficulties. She was not used to a leash, and I remember waking up at 3AM waiting outside for her to go potty. She used to thrash around, growl and play tug o war with that leash for up 15 minutes and I could not get her to stop! I thought dogs only growled if they were about to attack, so imagine my surprise when she growled at her toys, growled when she ran, growled when she was happy.. I foolishly thought she was dangerous but that is just how she communicates.

Nevertheless, she also growled at other dogs and people, including children. She was afraid of them and would try to hide. I sometimes wish I had gotten her from a "better" breeder because I felt that she was under-socialized. It makes you think if you get a perfect breeder, you have a perfect puppy. But in reality, like you said, there are no perfect puppies.

So I took her to training classes, I socialized her, I reconditioned her. I trained and trained because no matter what puppy you get, it is up to you to ultimately shape your life long companion. Mira is now 6 months and is now so excited around other people and dogs, she completely forgets about me now! Talk about a complete turn around.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,398 Posts
Willow was a great puppy. I went in understanding that I was the one that wanted her and I would be the one to do EVERYTHING with/for her. I made sure that we had plenty of stuff for her to chew on... around where she could get it. Set up a schedule in my head of how often I'd need to get up at night and worked very hard the first day(week) to get her accustomed to the crate. (I actually put her in the crate and sat it on the ottoman...put my foot on the side and read a book). Or working at my desk, with her in the crate beside me. After getting her to settle in the crate, it was easy. I also am VERY structured in my own life... so it was easy to put her on a schedule. Which I think helped. I also spent time sleeping on the sofa wholding onto her collar while she chewed. (As a result, she is a GREAT napper!!)

I kept telling myself... you are doing this for the DOG she will be, not the puppy she is. But, I have to be honest... I never asked what have I done. I was more stressed with my newborn skin babies... than I ever was with Willow.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
295 Posts
I had several "what have I done!?!" moments when Cooper was a puppy, especially in the first six weeks he was home. He is my first dog, so I was SUPER naive about the amount of work that goes into raising a puppy correctly. It is work. Every. Single. Day. Not for a week. Not for a month. Not for a season. Forever. But boy does all that work pay off when you see your puppy grow into such a wonderful companion.

After about 6 weeks with Cooper, I had a bit of a breakdown with my girlfriend over my "terror" of a pup. She laughed and said - he's a totally normal puppy. She went on to add - don't forget! All puppies are selfish @ssholes! They're cute, but total @ssholes.

It made me laugh because it's sort of true. There are these moments of sheer joy with puppies, but also moments of wanting to pull your hair out. You have to stick with it because all the patience, persistence and love you put into a puppy really does get returned 100 fold when they mature. That makes it all worthwhile.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,593 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Puppies can be crazy! I have a friend that has a baby less than 1 that is a handful and is actively searching for a German Shepard puppy. I've been trying to talk her out of it.
Ah - the craving for the oxytocin burst of a baby while not yet ready for another child! Try pointing out to her that her one year old will be happily crawling through pee puddles and worse while she struggles to housetrain the puppy (ever tried getting a toddler ready to go out in the less than 5 seconds window of opportunity before the puppy runs out of control?), and competing with the puppy for food and water bowl. Free feeding takes on a whole new meaning with a crawling baby...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
737 Posts
This is an excellent point.

I'm already getting "my puppies were perfect" memories, when really Jasper was a nasty little ankle-biting monster and Piper is only just now becoming reliably housebroken.

It's human nature to focus on the good memories, so it's no surprise that when we are thinking of getting a new puppy (or thinking about our dogs as puppies) that we remember the positives rather than the negatives. Those selective memories are great for our mental health, I'm sure, but can obviously result in a too-rosey picture of those first few months with a new pup.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,169 Posts
Oh, they can be trying at times for sure. But I guess I'm so enthralled with dogs and puppies that I just sort of take things in stride pretty well. I've raised a lot of puppies, trained a lot of dogs and horses too. I'm just fascinated with them and crazy about them. So, it's not that big a deal to me.

It was a little more work raising two puppies but again, not that big a deal. I often wonder what everyone is talking about...all these problems raising two puppies and how they're going to be all screwed up. A few things took a little longer for them to achieve in the way of training but they all get there eventually. I can't see doing it if I were working or if I had a lot of little children to raise at the same time. But the way it's been, it's been worth the extra work. They've turned into lovely, well mannered, happy, affectionate and outgoing young adults. There were a couple times where I had a fleeting thought, but I was even joking actually to myself, "OMG...what have I done?" But then I'd laugh at the toilet paper strewn all over the floor or the slipper that was all soggy wet. I often just grabbed my camera. You have to have a sense of humor and let some of the annoyances go with animals or you'd go crazy with worry. Things usually seem to right themselves in time. I think people often take it all too seriously and forget to enjoy their puppies.




I believe that if I make the commitment after much thought to get a puppy or two puppies in this case, then by golly I'm going to do my duty to raise them right. I am not the type to throw my hands up or send a puppy back when the going gets rough. And it has always paid off.

If someone has real trouble, then be prepared to pay for professional help. That's some money that should be set aside. I wish too, that people would study up on puppy raising before they get their puppy so maybe they wouldn't be so shocked.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
624 Posts
the myth of the Perfect Puppy: the one who sleeps happily in a crate all night from the start, is housetrained in a week of easy lessons, never chews anything except puppy toys, loves everyone, plays nicely with the cat and the children, trots beside you on a lead after just a couple of lessons...

Were there times you thought "OMG, what have I done?!" And what helped you make it through?
Hello
I have mentioned this before, but as a poodle rescuer, having a foster dog come into our home is LIKE having a puppy. Nearly every time a needy foster dog arrives, I think 'what have I done? Can I rehabilitate this dog?" I have no idea what the personality is going to be. Will he/she play? Is he/she aggressive, especially on groom table? How much effort is it going to be to potty train this dog? Is he/she going to eat? Kennel training, here we go again! Sleepless nights (just a few), spay/neuter surgery risks, compatibility to our dogs, Leash training...

I can honestly say we have fostered over 40 dogs and all were wonderful house pets when it was their time to go to permanent homes. All kennel trained, leash trained, properly fed (pounds gained, pounds lost), on a strict schedule, accustomed to grooming and socialized. This comes at a complete loss of sleep, time invested and hours of rehabilitation. They were all worth it, every one.

How did we make it through over 40 times? The families who graciously went thru the adoption process, who came out on the other side smiling, the first meeting of their new pet. The photographs I took of that very first introduction, THAT is what keeps me going.

PS. TO those of you who have adopted a rescue dog, PLEASE keep your foster/rescue apprised of your new pet. A short email, a photo, an update means so much to us who loved your pet first! It's those words of a dog's new life that really keep rescue going. It means a LOT to us.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,441 Posts
Since this is a puppy thread I will put in another plug for pet insurance! I just saw on Facebook that one of our members (Delilah)'s brother was diagnosed with Addison's disease. There is a gofundme for him.

There are a couple young dogs on this forum that were recently diagnosed with Addison's. This is a problem in our breed and it can take thousands of dollars to even establish a diagnosis. The treatment is lifelong. For the price to eat out once a month, you can be covered for unexpected illness and injuries.

Many of you know I accidentally injured Naira's eye on Sunday. Thankfully she was OK, but I can't tell you how comfortable I felt knowing I was backed up by pet insurance. That if it had been really bad, I could afford to take every measure possible. I never had pet insurance on my previous two dogs...and I got lucky.

However, I am really glad I have it now. A couple months ago I wondered if I really needed it and thought about cancelling it. Sure glad I didn't.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
22,140 Posts
Ahh, I could go on and on about puppy OMG moments with Lily and Peeves (but honestly mostly Lily).

She is a very high drive dog and showed it all very abundantly when she was 5/6 weeks old. We both went all in for her though. Early on (even before Peeves came home) she was wild in her greetings when I got home. Since BF was at home for a while with them when they were little she was often loose in the house when I got home from work. I got to a point where I dreaded what I was going to be greeted by so of course she read my external happy hellos and my internal dread as very confusing!

She would jump all over me. I had teeth on my hands, teeth on my clothes. She ripped jackets, sweaters shirts, shredded my hands. Land shark doesn't even begin to describe it! The turn around came when I decided I needed to adjust my attitudes. I took a walk down the street before I went in the house the day I had my "revelation." I did some calming breathing and made myself believe that it would all be good when I walked through the door. Lily came charging over to me and just as she was about to jump up I said sit and she did. We had a lovely hello, just the first of many! It was very hard for me to do, but vital for our family that I did.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
15,807 Posts
I came from a large, noisy, always in chaos Italian family with lots of puppies and kittens and other various animals so it has never been a big deal to me to cope with all the things a puppy does to disrupt your peace and destroy your home. I learned tolerance at an early age .....You simply clean up after them, repair what they damaged, and put away what you don't want destroyed while teaching them to be a 'good dog'.....not much different than raising a toddler.
I guess I've been really lucky and have never owned a dog with any serious behavior problems bad enough to make me want to tear my hair out or want to get rid of them! I loved them all way too much!
I sat here and really thought hard about any bad puppy things Molly has done and the only thing she ever destroyed was the corner of a decorator pillow when she was teething.......... an extraordinarily good puppy, she has been my easiest dog EVER!!! (Except when we go to my son's house and she finds the tootsie rolls in the cat's litter box...Oh well.....LOL!)
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
3,110 Posts
Great thread!!

I need to say again that it's been a long time since I've had puppies. Trina was a puppy in 1999, and Kaydee in 2000. But I have to say, I never thought of, " OMG, what have I gotten myself into", or anything like that. I don't remember EVER thinking about it. Perhaps it's because I was a Poodle puppy owner long before Trina and Kaydee, or maybe it's because I just took it all in stride, and never allowed myself to even think about how much work it really went into to raising a baby. For me, I LOVED taking care of a puppy. I've always wanted a puppy, not older than 13 or 14 weeks of age. I looked forward to learning and growing with my baby, and that, to me, is all part of dog ownership. Learning, growing, and making mistakes as we went along.

I remember always taking a few days off of work right after bringing the puppy home, and I remember all of the precious things my babies did throughout their puppy years, but other than that, I never really had any problems----or let me correct that---- I never had any HUGE problems. I don't know, maybe it was because I just didn't let it get to me. That's pretty much the way my personality is anyway. Just going with the flow of things, and not allowing stuff to get to me too much.

I'm sure this post is not what anyone wants to hear, but it's the truth. If you have the mindset of just not letting things get to you, and you take it all in stride, maybe it won't be so bad. Just know that things WILL get better between you and your puppy. In the end you will be so proud of yourself and your baby of how wonderful he/she has turned out to be. And then, you'll want to do it all over again! :)
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
10,387 Posts
Since this is a puppy thread I will put in another plug for pet insurance! I just saw on Facebook that one of our members (Delilah)'s brother was diagnosed with Addison's disease. There is a gofundme for him.

There are a couple young dogs on this forum that were recently diagnosed with Addison's. This is a problem in our breed and it can take thousands of dollars to even establish a diagnosis. The treatment is lifelong. For the price to eat out once a month, you can be covered for unexpected illness and injuries.

Many of you know I accidentally injured Naira's eye on Sunday. Thankfully she was OK, but I can't tell you how comfortable I felt knowing I was backed up by pet insurance. That if it had been really bad, I could afford to take every measure possible. I never had pet insurance on my previous two dogs...and I got lucky.

However, I am really glad I have it now. A couple months ago I wondered if I really needed it and thought about cancelling it. Sure glad I didn't.

There is value to peace of mind!
I wish that Petplan had made a big profit off of me, but since that wasn't to be, I am grateful for the money to pay their bills!
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
3,110 Posts
I came from a large, noisy, always in chaos Italian family with lots of puppies and kittens and other various animals so it has never been a big deal to me to cope with all the things a puppy does to disrupt your peace and destroy your home. I learned tolerance at an early age .....You simply clean up after them, repair what they damaged, and put away what you don't want destroyed while teaching them to be a 'good dog'.....not much different than raising a toddler.
I guess I've been really lucky and have never owned a dog with any serious behavior problems bad enough to make me want to tear my hair out or want to get rid of them! I loved them all way too much!
I sat here and really thought hard about any bad puppy things Molly has done and the only thing she ever destroyed was the corner of a decorator pillow when she was teething.......... an extraordinarily good puppy, she has been my easiest dog EVER!!! (Except when we go to my son's house and she finds the tootsie rolls in the cat's litter box...Oh well.....LOL!)

:D I'm STILL smiling! Good mindset to have!!
Great post!
 
1 - 20 of 218 Posts
Top